Sterlington 16, Minden 9

SIBLEY — Luke Denman went 3-for-4 with four RBIs and Jobe Guthrie notched his first varsity win as Sterlington spanked Minden 16-9 Friday evening in the Bistineau Tournament semifinals.

It was all Minden early.

Two walks, two hit batsmen, a couple of errors and Trevor McLean's RBI double enabled the Crimson Tide to grab a 4-0 lead in the top of the first.

McLean singled leading off the third and eventually scored on Seth Johnson's squeeze bunt as Minden went up 5-0.

Sterlington (9-0) came alive in the third as two-run singles by Carson Clowers and Braden Hough, along with Denman's RBI double, sparked a six-run third.

Davis Johnson singled to open the fourth. Two batters later, Denman launched a two-run bomb as the Panthers widened the margin to 8-5.

Minden pushed a run across in the fifth, but the Panthers tacked on five in the home half of the frame.

Johnson's RBI single and Rushworth's two-run double helped the Panthers open up a 13-6 spread.

Minden continued to battle, drawing within 13-9 in the sixth on McLean's two-run triple.

Sterlington added three runs on only one hit in the bottom of the sixth while expanding its lead to 16-9.

Denman worked a three-up, three-down seventh to close it out.

Guthrie, the second of four Sterlington pitchers, gave up two runs (one earned) on four hits over 4.1 innings for the win. He struck out one without being charged with a walk.

Denman finished a triple shy of the cycle and scored three times to pace the Panthers' 12-hit production. Johnson and Logan Rushing generated two singles apiece, McDonald and Rushworth doubled and Clowers, Hough and Seaver Sheets singled.

For Minden, the loss offset a splendid hitting display by McLean, who was involved in seven of his club's nine runs. His final line: 4-for-4 with a triple, a double two singles, four RBIs, three runs scored. Rounding out the eight-hit attack were Hunter Wilkes with a triple and a single, and Jalien Moore and Jaryn Lindsay with base hits.